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My two gumby friends and I are headed out to Devil's Lake
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By Adam H. Smith
Mar 26, 2013
On the summit, seriously, almost too perfect a day.

Hi all,

Quick question for the Devil's Lake veterans. I'm headed up on 4/12 with two friends for their first outdoor climbing session. I've climbed before (all TR) but never at Devil's Lake. Any suggestions on a good area for top roping? I have the climber's guide but can't pinpoint a good area because I WANT TO CLIMB EVERYTHING.

Climbing abilities anywhere from a 5.6-5.10.

Thanks for the help!

-Adam


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By DrunkenHaymitch
From Madison, WI
Mar 26, 2013

If you want the biggest bang for your buck just go to the east rampart. Keep in mind that we still have a good bit of snow on the ground here so things could still be wet and sloppy, the east bluff faces south so hopefully you should be able to find some dry routes along there.

If you go to Pete's Project that should be a challenge for newer climbers and if they are in over their head on that, Anemia is right next door (both listed under Many Pines Buttress). Both of those are not far off the CCC trail. If the base of the cliff is muddy and nasty you can always keep going up the CCC trail towards D'Arcy's buttress.


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By Tom Mulholland
From #1 Cheese Producing State!
Mar 26, 2013
Whiskey-a-Go-Go

DrunkenHaymitch wrote:
If you want the biggest bang for your buck just go to the east rampart. Keep in mind that we still have a good bit of snow on the ground here so things could still be wet and sloppy, the east bluff faces south so hopefully you should be able to find some dry routes along there. If you go to Pete's Project that should be a challenge for newer climbers and if they are in over their head on that, Anemia is right next door (both listed under Many Pines Buttress). Both of those are not far off the CCC trail. If the base of the cliff is muddy and nasty you can always keep going up the CCC trail towards D'Arcy's buttress.


I wouldn't suggest Peter's Project to beginners, because the crux can be quite tricky for some, and it's only 10-15 ft off the deck. Usually, people just end up failing and getting discouraged. Let them do that once they're already hooked on climbing. The first day is for ego-patting.
  • Edit: Ego-stroking. Sorry, my English has been getting worse...


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By aed
From Jackson, WY
Mar 26, 2013
aed

The Rack is a fun climb in that general area


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By Rock Warrior Films
Mar 26, 2013

The east ramparts/CCC trail is the spot to go right now. There is quite a bit of snow in the park except for that part of the lake.


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By Paul Dieterle
From Pasadena, CA
Mar 26, 2013
Chow down

If you want East Bluff (most people's favorite):

Go to the Rainy Wednesday Tower area (www.mountainproject.com/v/foreplay/105730604). You can throw a TR on Foreplay, which is great fun, and then move it over to Orgasm (classic roof climb). When you top out Orgasm, you can move over to Double Overhang (or do it first...) which is "the best 5.4 in Wisconsin." It rocks! After that, you can move over to Brinton's Buttress (www.mountainproject.com/v/brintons-crack/105730484) and try Brinton's Crack/Direct. Finish it up at Pedestal Buttress (www.mountainproject.com/v/upper-diagonal/105730598) with Birch Tree Crack, Upper Diagonal, and Congratulations. All in all, a day at the best trio of buttresses at DL.

If you want West Bluff (my personal favorite):

Go to the Cleo Amphitheater (www.mountainproject.com/v/the-cleo-amphitheater/105730098) and warm up on what I think is the best easy climb at DL, Queen's Throne. You could stick around for a bit or (better option) move up to Prospect Point Rampart (www.mountainproject.com/v/prospect-point-rampart/105730178). Here, you will be able to spend hours on the Lost Face climbs, which are the longest, most entertaining moderate classics at DL. If you're feeling adventurous, you could try some of the area testpieces like Coup D'Etat, Wild West Homo, etc. I like West Bluff more because the views are more breath-taking and the rock is less polished.

Enjoy!

EDIT: If you choose the West Bluff, hike up the fireman's trail and NOT the trail suggested in the book.


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By Adam H. Smith
Mar 26, 2013
On the summit, seriously, almost too perfect a day.

Sweet, thanks all.

If anyone can tell me the closest place to grab a brew after a day of climbing, I'll be there Saturday 4/13, come join!


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By Ted Kryzer
From Rochester, MN
Mar 27, 2013

The Barn just down the road from the North entrance of the park. You can miss it as it is a barn. Has a solid selection of beer and awesome food. It has never done me wrong.


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By Carl Sherven
Mar 27, 2013

I'll throw in another vote for The Cleo Amphitheater. Tons of easy fun stuff, pretty easy approach, and you probably won't have too many other people around.

I'd also like to mention that it's standard at DL to let people use your rope if it's hanging on a climb with nobody using it. Also, if you go somewhere with a trail at the top (like East Rampart), please don't run webbing or cord across the trail; people do this sometimes and it reflects poorly on the climbing community.

As far as beer afterwards goes, there's also Monk's in downtown Baraboo. They've got a nice selection of quality brew, and very good food (in terms of bar food). If you're going out of town past Lake Delton/Wisconsin Dells there's Moosejaw Brewpub on Highway 12 in Lake Delton. If you're going out of town past Madison there's two great places just off the interstate: a microbrewery called Ale Asylum and a brewpub called Karben4.


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By Adam H. Smith
Apr 1, 2013
On the summit, seriously, almost too perfect a day.

Carl Sherven wrote:
I'll throw in another vote for The Cleo Amphitheater. Tons of easy fun stuff, pretty easy approach, and you probably won't have too many other people around. I'd also like to mention that it's standard at DL to let people use your rope if it's hanging on a climb with nobody using it. Also, if you go somewhere with a trail at the top (like East Rampart), please don't run webbing or cord across the trail; people do this sometimes and it reflects poorly on the climbing community...



The Amphitheater is what we're leaning towards, unless the temps drop and it snows next week; then we're off to MTB in Michigan.

With the Amphitheater in mind, any suggestions on webbing, anchors, etc.? I'm headed up with about 40' of webbing plus a set of nuts and hexes.


Thanks for the heads up on rope etiquette Carl. I think I would instinctively be hesitant to use someone's rope (and vice versa) but it will save a hell of a lot of time of changing TR positions.


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By highnoonhilltopper
Apr 1, 2013
j tree

Learn to share ropes, or watch them get pulled. DL is crowded and everyone shares TR. Remember that the leader always has the right of way. Welcome to the Lake.


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By Doug Hemken
Administrator
Apr 1, 2013
On Everleigh Club Crack.  Photo by Burt Lindquist.

This time of year, south facing stuff (anything from Balanced Rock, east) warms quickest and stays pleasant longest.

  • Everything* can be top-roped.

This year you might want to bring along your ice-fishing gear ....


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By Woodchuck ATC
Apr 1, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008

Rock Warrior Films wrote:
The east ramparts/CCC trail is the spot to go right now. There is quite a bit of snow in the park except for that part of the lake.


Ditto..head up the CCC and with the guide book you should find tons of stuff to do within the first or second buttress of rocks, less than 100 yds. of hiking along the base of cliffs. All have obvious setups on top..just don't cross the trail with a long sling back to some tree.


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By Adam H. Smith
Apr 2, 2013
On the summit, seriously, almost too perfect a day.

Woodchuck ATC wrote:
Ditto..head up the CCC and with the guide book you should find tons of stuff to do within the first or second buttress of rocks, less than 100 yds. of hiking along the base of cliffs.


Awesome. We'll probably head that way. Could someone please tell the rain gods to hold off next week??


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By Joe Holzinger
From Brentwood, CA
Apr 8, 2013

I would suggest east bluff, up ccc trail to the monster or d'arcy's buttress and pedestal buttress - I am pretty new to climbing and that was a pretty good place for us last season...


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By Joe Holzinger
From Brentwood, CA
Apr 8, 2013

brinton's buttress also on the west


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By Woodchuck ATC
Apr 8, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008

Joe Holzinger wrote:
brinton's buttress also on the west

You mean East....it's not on the West Bluff.


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By Joe Holzinger
From Brentwood, CA
Apr 8, 2013

yeah my bad -- west side of Brinton's buttress


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